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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 93 Cabriolet and the problem started when I was sitting at stop lights/signs/etc the engine would run fine for a while, then all of a sudden rev up to about 3 grand, drop way down and start reving like that, back and forth, higher and lower until idle dropped really low and the car stalled.
I'm trying to sell this car, so I decided I'd fix it and replaced the spark plugs, wires, fuel pump, fuel filter, distributor cap, rotor....now it's worse. When you start the car and press the gas, it hesitates. There isn't a check engine light on.
Also, I dissconnected this:

I think this is the coolant sensor (all I know is it's blue, and it's the only blue sensor I could find) when it was disconnected it had the SAME symptoms only more drastic. If this is the problem, how do I replace it.
I did a search and found it seems to be one of a few things:
1. Dirty/stuck Idle Stabilizer Valve
2. Bad Coolant Sensor/O2 sensor
3. Vacuum line leak
4. Dirty EGR
My problems, I have no idea what those things look like!! I really need help! I know the first things I should do is clean the throttle body and EGR, but how? Where are they? Picutres would be EXTREMELY helpful.
I REALLY don't want to take it to a stealership....I know I can do the work myself, but I need a little push in the right direction.
 

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Re: I'm a girl, so excuse my stupidity...whats wrong with my car? (litljenarey)

Clean the ISV (idle stabilizer valve). Its the metal cylinder on top of the valve cover with a 2 or 3 wire plug( it buzzes when the ignition is on but the engine is off). there should be 2 plastic / rubber hoses running into it. Dont unplug it with the ignition on, you can damage the computer. remove the hoses that go into it and spray the inside of it with Carb Cleaner. hook it all up and if that didnt help try unplugging the 02 (oxygen) sensor. On the back of the engine where the exhaust comes out there is a sensor, the wires should lead up somewhere near the brake fluid resirvoir. unplug it, its either a 1 wire or 3 wire harness. Drive the car with the 02 sensor unplugged and note any changes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Re: I'm a girl, so excuse my stupidity...whats wrong with my car? (Coupe_88)


This is the ISV, right? I took off the hoses (which you can't see in the picture) and it didn't make any difference. I did notice the wiring cover is burnt, I can't get it off, and I'm not sure if the wires are affected. You can see the wires in the picture. That might be the problem?
The O2 sensor, which one is that (or is it none of the above)
 

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Re: I'm a girl, so excuse my stupidity...whats wrong with my car? (litljenarey)

Yes that is the ISV the inside of it can be sprayed out with carb cleaner to get some of the gunk out of it,
Though cabriolets arent my specialty , I am pretty sure the yellow circle is the 02 sensor.
The blue circle is the power feed for the fuel injectors
 

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Re: I'm a girl, so excuse my stupidity...whats wrong with my car? (litljenarey)

I don't think its the ISV. I would be checking the oxygen sensor first (disconnect and see if the car runs better) and then hunt for the vacuum leaks.
You can trace the oxygen sensor wire from the oxygen sensor itself which is usually mounted on the exhaust downpipe.
Does it happen when the car is cold or warm or in both conditions ?
You said the car hesitates when you step on the gas ? is the hesitation intermittent or is it consistent and doesn't go away even after having your foot on the gas for a while ?


Modified by Sarwat at 12:55 AM 7-2-2003
 

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Re: I'm a girl, so excuse my stupidity...whats wrong with my car? (litljenarey)

Quote, originally posted by litljenarey »
I'm a girl, so excuse my stupidity...

Jeez Louis...do you really want to say things like that?
You're trying to learn and are doing some of the work yourself...c'mon now. Good luck with your ride.
Regards,
Erin.....a girl.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Re: I'm a girl, so excuse my stupidity...whats wrong with my car? (OhMyGli)

Quote, originally posted by OhMyGli »

Jeez Louis...do you really want to say things like that?
You're trying to learn and are doing some of the work yourself...c'mon now. Good luck with your ride.

I don't know about this site, but on my other site, girls get more responses (come on, you looked at this thread, and bumped it for me, thnks) so I figured I'd get more looks and better "idiot" instructions this way. Most of the time it's simple "yeah, clean the soandso" then I have to be "ummm, whats a soandso, where is it and how to I clean it" So, I figured I'd let everyone know up front they need to speak S L O W L Y.


The hesitation is all the time, when you press the gas, the engine doesn't do anything for a sec, then VROOM. It's worst if you tap it repeatedly, and quickly.

I live in NC, so it's fairly warm here year round, but the stalling problem only happens once the engine has warmed up. I'm not sure If that answers your question.
 

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Re: I'm a girl, so excuse my stupidity...whats wrong with my car? (litljenarey)

You are showing more mechanical ability than 99% of men....want to marry a 48 year old guy?
 

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Re: I'm a girl, so excuse my stupidity...whats wrong with my car? (litljenarey)

If you don't get it fixed, call German Speed Merchants in Wilmington and talk with Jon Lewis, the owner. Jon is a great person and very experienced with VW's. Good luck,WWR.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Re: I'm a girl, so excuse my stupidity...whats wrong with my car? (WackyWabbitRacer)

LOL, yeah...you know those guys! Ask them about the 86 Golf they have sitting in the back.....ask tell him he'd better get those flanges done soon, we miss the dub!!
j/k
He helps me out alot, GSM is across the street from my complex. We have him building us a custom turbo setup for our Golf, it's taken some time (been there since November) but he's cutting us a deal because he's doing it in his spare time, so, I'm not complaining. When it's done, it'll be AWESOME. They are probably the best shop I've been to, really nice guys, very helpful.
I can ask them this week though, he's gone until Wednesday for something (at least thats what they told me) I work Thursday and they close Friday for the 4th. So, I'm on my own until next monday

But next time you see Jon tell him he rocks!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Re: I'm a girl, so excuse my stupidity...whats wrong with my car? (litljenarey)

UPDATE: I unplugged the O2 sensor and the car runs worse. So, does that rule that out?
I also unplugged the one in the red circle (ok, so, I tried it before I got an answer and pulled the wrong one) but in case you wanted to know, don't do that, it doesn't run.

Something I had forgotten, the oil pressure!! Whenever the idle is messed up, the oil light comes on and the oil gauge drops down! I had been so worried about the hesitation that I hadn't let it warm up to check that it was still idling funny and forgot it did that!
Also, someone brought up the head gasket on another forum, it is NOT the HG, no smoke, no mixing fluids, no leaks.
A tech from the Dodge dealership said it may be "bad gas"
:lol: Any chance I just need to switch to premium? It almost ran out of gas right beofre it started this, could that be causing it?
 

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Re: I'm a girl, so excuse my stupidity...whats wrong with my car? (litljenarey)

If you ran the tank REALLY low you COULD have pulled some sediment into the screen on the transfer pump. That would require removal of the rear seat to get to the plate (black circle with screws holding it in) that accesses the fuel tank sending unit/transfer pump. Pull the plate off and the rest is RIGHT under it. Fairly straightforward procedure but, remember, you're going INSIDE the fuel tank doing this, so BE SURE you've disconnected the negative (-) battery terminal FIRST!! Once you get the sending unit out you'll be able to see the screen (on the end of the part you just pulled) and if it's dirty. If so, replacements are really cheap, or, you could spray it down with carb cleaner (just make sure you spray the junk AWAY from the pickup tube for the pump).
Just a thought.


Modified by VolksRacer2 at 12:54 AM 7-2-2003
 

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Re: I'm a girl, so excuse my stupidity...whats wrong with my car? (litljenarey)

If you unplugged the O2 sensor and its running worse that's either the coolant temp sensor that's bad or something fuel related.
Since you said that the car almost ran out of gas before this started I agree with VolksRacer2.
Goodluck http://****************.com/smile/emthup.gif
 

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Re: I'm a girl, so excuse my stupidity...whats wrong with my car? (VolksRacer2)

Quote, originally posted by VolksRacer2 »
If you ran the tank REALLY low you COULD have pulled some sediment into the screen on the transfer pump. That would require removal of the rear seat to get to the plate (black circle with screws holding it in) that accesses the fuel tank sending unit/transfer pump. Pull the plate off and the rest is RIGHT under it. Fairly straightforward procedure but, remember, you're going INSIDE the fuel tank doing this, so BE SURE you've disconnected the negative (-) battery terminal FIRST!! Once you get the sending unit out you'll be able to see the screen (on the end of the part you just pulled) and if it's dirty. If so, replacements are really cheap, or, you could spray it down with carb cleaner (just make sure you spray the junk AWAY from the pickup tube for the pump).
Just a thought.
Modified by VolksRacer2 at 12:54 AM 7-2-2003

I had this problem - I ran *completely* out of fuel
(hey, my gauge was broken) and even when refilled the tank my car was doing what you described - changed the inline fuel filter and all was tickety boo. ACtually, had to change the fuel filter *twice* (once 2 wks or so later) to completely alleviate the problem.
It was, as stated above, crud from the bottom of the tank clogging things up.
Dan
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Re: I'm a girl, so excuse my stupidity...whats wrong with my car? (Sarwat)

well, sorry...I've never heard of a transer pump, I thought that was a fuel pump....and it's already been replaced. That's the first thing i tried!
I can figure this out, I'm going to have to take it to the dealer I guess. I've run out of options.
Someone told me to test the coolant sensor, unplug both it and the black on in front of it and put the blue on on the black one's place. It would hadly even run that way!!
 

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Re: I'm a girl, so excuse my stupidity...whats wrong with my car? (litljenarey)

I'm wondering if the wiring on your MAF is making a good connection. I've seen it do the same thing on a few other cars. In case your not sure, the MAF is where the airbox bolts onto, and has most likely a 4 wire plug going into it. Check connections there, and check for any vaccum leaks around the intake area. BTW...hope this is a Digi car, just assuming it is since it's a 93.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Re: I'm a girl, so excuse my stupidity...whats wrong with my car? (litljenarey)

I finally got pissed and took the car to GSM....John was there. He says I need to check the timing, Ohms on the Coolant Temp Sensor (make sure they are reading the EXACT becuase it could be off) Ohms on the throttle switches, and the air box thing (the little black box on top of the airbox) in that order. He said it's most likely a loose timing belt.

My roommate and boyfriend are going to have to do those things for me....I don't even know if we have the equipment for that!
I'll keep everyone updated with whats going on.
Thanks so much for all the help!
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Re: I'm a girl, so excuse my stupidity...whats wrong with my car? (litljenarey)

LOL, I missed that before I posted....the little air box thing....thats the MAF. I'll go check that since the rest of that has to wait for Matt. What's a Digi car?


Modified by litljenarey at 5:31 PM 7-2-2003
 

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Re: I'm a girl, so excuse my stupidity...whats wrong with my car? (litljenarey)

Digi is the type of ignition/fuel computer. I've got Digifant-2 in my 92' GTI too. It's VW's version of a Bosch control system. Before that was Bosch CIS and then there was Motronic, etc. Different versions that do similar jobs - control fuel into the motor, spark timing, ignition advance, etc. All the sensors plug in and the Digifant control engine functions by reading all sensors.
 
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